By Jim Coventry, RotoWire Football Writer
Special to Yahoo Sports
Here’s a look at IDPs who have favorable Week 8 matchups. IDP formats can be quite different, so we’ll list players of varying levels. Some will be players found on the waiver wire while in other leagues players will be automatic starters.
Danielle Hunter, Browns vs. Vikings – After starting the season with three straight games without a sack, Hunter’s recorded sacks in two of his last four games, so he appears to be turning things around. Since the Vikings have a number of pass rushers, he certainly won’t be keyed on, so he can easily keep rolling this week against the Browns. Not only should they play with a lead for most of the contest – which should force them into throwing the ball often – but Cleveland will be without their best offensive lineman, Joe Thomas, so this will be an offense to exploit more than usual.
Fletcher Cox, Eagles vs. 49ers – Cox certainly won’t pile up tackle numbers – he averages less than two per game – but he sure can get to opposing QBs. After the Cowboys consistently harassed C.J. Beathard and the 49ers offense, the Eagles will likely have the rookie running for his life all day, especially when they’ll likely be playing from behind. It would be a surprise if Cox doesn’t get another sack and this could be the type of week he posts more than one.
Trey Flowers, Patriots vs. Chargers – Flowers hasn’t been much of an IDP factor over the last four weeks. During that time, he’s collected just half a sack, though he’s averaging five tackles so his floor is somewhat stable. In a matchup against the Chargers, there’s a strong chance the Pats will be playing with a lead, and that’s just the type of game script that should allow Flowers to get back in the sack column the same way he did when collecting three of them over the first three games of the season.
Brandon Graham, Eagles vs. 49ers – Although he hasn’t had a monster game lately, Graham has tallied at least half a sack in the majority of his games this season. Facing rookie QB C.J. Beathard in a game played in the Eagles’ house may be just the combination that Graham will need to get his first huge game since Week 1. It’s extremely unlikely that the 49ers O-line will have an answer for the relentless front-seven of the Eagles and Graham should end up having a very productive afternoon.
Christian Kirksey, Browns vs. Vikings – The last two games, Kirksey has posted an unreal 27 tackles and a forced fumble, so he’s clearly playing at a very high level. Aside from his recent streak, he’s yet to post fewer than five stops in a game while registering at least eight of them in more than half his games. As usual, the Browns are expected to be playing from behind, which means the Vikings will likely pile up a big number of rushing attempts, which should allow the Browns’ LB to have another big performance.
Eric Kendricks, Vikings at Browns – Even though Kendricks got off to a fairly slow start to the season (he posted five or fewer tackles in Weeks 3 through 5), he’s become a high-level IDP option lately. He’s posted double-digit tackles in two-straight contests, and he’ll have an excellent matchup to keep rolling this week. Although the Browns don’t run the ball a ton, mostly due to negative game scripts, they’ve thrown quite a few short passes. As a result, he’s in line to continue his recent hot streak.
Leonard Floyd, Bears at Saints – Through the first three weeks of the year, Floyd didn’t record a sack. Well, things have changed quite a bit since then. Not only has he notched four sacks over the last four weeks, but he’s had a number of near-misses as well. With the likelihood of the Saints struggling to run the ball against the Chicago defense, Drew Brees should drop back to pass enough that Floyd can continue to post another strong stat line.
Lawrence Timmons, Dolphins at Ravens – In the four games that Timmons has played this season, he recorded at least six tackles in three of them. After a slow outing last week, when he posted just three stops, he should get back on track against the Ravens. Not only do they have a below-average O-line, but they run one of the most conservative offensive attacks in the league. Look for Timmons to have another solid game, though he has upside in terms of making a big play or two as well.
Adrian Amos, Bears at Saints – Since Amos became a regular in the Chicago secondary, he’s been a strong IDP. In his first three games in his current role, he posted eight tackles along with an interception return for a TD. Although he had a bit of a down week against the Panthers with just six tackles, he’ll be up against a Saints’ defense that frequently throws passes in the intermediate area of the field. Amos should find himself very busy, not only tackling the RBs, but he’ll also have added opportunities against the remaining Saints’ pass-catchers.
Justin Simmons, Broncos at Chiefs – Simmons has been a very volatile fantasy performer, as he’s had between one and 11 tackles this year. He’s had two poor performances coming over the past two weeks, so he’s not coming into this game on a high note. However, the Chiefs run the ball and also throw over the middle of the field frequently, which makes this a strong matchup. He’s had at least five tackles in four of six games to start the season, but he should fare well with KC’s style of offense, so this could be a big game for him. There is risk, for sure, but there is upside to be had as well.
Daniel Sorensen, Chiefs vs. Broncos – Since Week 2, Sorensen has recorded at least six tackles in every game except one, making him a strong IDP option at the safety position. He’ll be up against a conservative offensive approach from the Broncos, one that should result in many plays happening in front of him in the middle of the field both on the ground and through the air. Look for another strong effort from him this week.
Tre Boston, Chargers at Patriots – Boston has been an inconsistent fantasy option this season. He’s had three games with three or fewer tackles, but he’s also had three contests with at least seven stops. He should be in line for one of his bigger performances against the horizontal passing attack that the Patriots employ along with what should be a heavy dose of running plays against a suspect Los Angeles front-seven.